Starting at the finish line


In my opinion, nothing is more thrilling or more intimidating than planning what a room should look like from scratch.  But also, here’s what my head looks like on the inside right now:


Currently, our kitchen is basically a medium-sized dirty rectangle (took the picture up top yesterday).  But our filthy parallelogram fills me with such dorky excitement and gleeful anticipation– because it’s time for the stuff I’m actually interested in.  No more pretending to pay attention while my husband uses his protractor and talks about the kitchen triangle.  No more sneaky Pinteresting during a powwow with Engineer and Contractor over effective use of space.  It’s time for ya girl’s most favorite segment in the renovation process…it’s time to PICK–THOSE–FINISHES! (hold for applause).  

Good grief, there are just so many options, though!  And they all have to look great TOGETHER!  It’s easy to get flustered by the endless cabinet, counter top, back splash, paint, and appliances choices.  And by flustered, I mean like staying up until 2 in the morning on looking up grout colors, or making a “kitchen finishes” screen shot album on your phone that has SEVENTY-NINE pictures in it, hypothetically…for example.

But after many a sleepless night, we’ve (I’ve-my husband just pretends to care on this part) chosen what I think will be the finishes for the kitchen.  I’ll post them below, so if you’re not a nerd like me about stuff like this, maybe just stop here and wait for the next blog about the history of the house (found out such good stuff today!).  But if you’re an HGTV junkie, a DIY enthusiast, or if you just kind of wish Joanna Gaines was you bff,  here ya go:  (Feedback totally welcome–nothing is permanent yet, so tell me if the plan needs tweaking).

We’re refinishing the hardwoods that were underneath a layer of tile and a layer of linoleum, so they’ll look like the rest of the house when they’re done.  Below is a pic of what the newly-refinished living area looked like for the 4 hours the house was clean about three weeks ago:


For a sitting area, we are making a little bar space across the far window in the kitchen.  I posted a picture about this in a previous post, but here’s another idea of what it may look like.  The final product is a little nebulous, still, but I’m excited to see how it turns out.


We aren’t having any upper cabinets because the space seems a little too narrow for them, so we’re using open shelving like this-


-but we’ll have a stainless hood for above the stove (stainless was on sale at Jeff Lynch, so what can you do?).

I especially love the black brackets holding the shelves.  Here’s a close up of a similar style:




We’re planning to do painted lower cabinets, and here’s the color I think we’re going with: (this could be a total game time decision–I can be shifty about paint colors)

cabinet color.jpg

And the counter tops will be white quartz.  Cambria Torquay is the specific name for the style below.  Apparently, it’s what you can get if you want marble but you’re too poor.


The back splash will be white, also.  I was thinking of doing subway tiles, but we’re using a lot of those in the bathroom, so I decided on these sexy hexys instead:


–but with lighter grout than in the picture above.  For some reason, I have a hard time liking that much contrast, and I feel like I’d always be wanting to somehow brush the tile’s teeth, for lack of a better way to describe it.  But also I’m neurotic, so anyway.

I also want to use white paint for the walls, which I’ll admit makes for a pretty tame color palate in there.  Not usually my style, but I’ve also realized that I like to change up decor things too much to make anything that will be permanent too bold.  Instead, I’ll try to add color with accent pieces on the shelves like these cute, vintage, minty little jadeite green dishes that I just discovered (thanks, grandma!)


Plus, we’re using this tile–


for the adjoining pantry area, and for the attached laundry and half-bath.  Neutral, but a little sassy, right?!  Also considering using this tile around the fireplace in the kitchen, but probably another game time decish.

The only thing we actually already have (so please don’t comment that they’re ugly because I have no idea where the receipts are), are two of these light fixtures for the center of the room:


OK, I’ll stop.  It’s a lot, I know.  I just can’t help myself.  Picking finishes is the BEST.  Let’s hope it all comes together and looks alright…Whatcha think?!

In the mean time, I’ll go wake up my husband from the hour-long boredom coma he’s been in while I’ve shown him all my ideas and tell him some of the ghost stories I’ve heard today about our crazy old house.  Can’t wait to share more soon!


2 thoughts on “Starting at the finish line

  1. Marybeth says:

    You have good taste! Ah that Jaditie. Perfect! Maybe a little darker on the cabinets. The greenish in the picture you posted is beautiful. I like everything else you are choosing. Love open shelves!
    I would say don’t use that tile you are using in pantry on the fireplace. You need a nod to the old house somewhere so how about finding some Antique tile? That other one is beautiful and funky but not believable as the tile surround for a fireplace in an old house. Good luck!


    • katherineabrooks1 says:

      Thank you so much for your feedback! I totally agree with the tile–as soon as they started installing it on the floors, it was an obvious “no” for the fireplace. Looking for other options now. I appreciate the encouragement!


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